Sable In Words – A Writing Contest for Youth Ages 12 – 14 Years


The Sable Island Institute is offering prizes for creative prose about Sable Island

If you live in Nova Scotia and your age is between 12 and 14, and Sable Island interests you, you could be one of two winners. The work of two students will be chosen for excellence in research and writing.

Each winner will receive $100.00; two Sable Island books; a set of Sable Island note cards; and a membership in the Ecology Action Centre, or the Writers’ Federation of Nova Scotia, or the Sable Island Institute—winner’s choice.

What aspect of Sable Island interests you?
Here are some examples of subjects that might inspire your writing.

  • History, shipwrecks and the island’s reputation as the “Graveyard of the Atlantic”.
  • The lifesaving station and the people who worked there.
  • The seasons, storms, windswept dunes and old abandoned buildings half-buried by wind-blown sand.
  • The weather station, or the scientists and students who study Sable’s plants and animals.
  • The bands of wild horses, or the thousands of seabirds that nest on the island.
  • The life and the long-distance travels of the Ipswich Sparrow, a little bird that nests only on Sable Island, nowhere else in the world.
  • All the grey seals that gather on the beach for pupping season.
  • Orchids, cranberries, and wild roses.
  • The sounds—the roar of the surf, voices of seals in the night, or the rattling and rustling of grasses in the wind.
  • Or even the plastic litter that washes up on the beach.

And there’s so much more, so many different subjects to explore!


There are good websites—for example:

The Sable Island Institute website:
The Parks Canada website:

And interesting library books—for example:

Bruce Armstrong’s Sable Island (2010)
Lyall Campbell’s Sable Island Shipwrecks (1994)
Johanna Bertin’s Sable Island, Tales of Tragedy and Survival from the Graveyard of the Atlantic (2006)


500—1000 words


Submit your work in an attached Word document to

The deadline for submission is Friday, March 15, 2019.


Winners will be announced on April 22, 2019.
The winning writing will be posted on the Sable Island Institute website.

Questions may be sent to Sable Island –

We are looking forward to reading your stories!

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